November 6, 2011

What A Difference A Day Makes

Yesterday, volunteers were allowed into the Roanoke Pound (RCACP) for the first time. The change came after concerned citizens advocated to the media, presented at city council meetings, and rallied in the streets as a united voice for the animals that don't have one.  

  • We needed the public to know that the no kill SPCA is not the same as the high kill Roanoke Pound where 4767 dogs and cats were killed in 2010.
  • We asked (and asked and asked) for volunteers to be let into the building.

The public did become aware, and proved they not are so irresponsible after all. So far this year, the kill numbers are better. The stats up to September 2011 show that 2069 dogs and cats have been killed. Still far from ideal, but an improvement. The intake numbers at the pound have also decreased.

A few days ago, the RCACP announced the volunteer program, and very shortly after the talented photographer Hany Hosny went in to work his magic. Since the pound does not have open adoption hours, the only way many of these pets will be seen is through their photo on the internet.

Up to this point, the staff was responsible for taking photos of the available pets. With their many duties, it's a wonder they have done this well. But, no offense intended, many of us just don't have that creative eye, myself included. And that's where volunteers come in. Take a look.


Black: Before

 This animal is currently at the Regional Center for Animal Control and Protection and is in danger of euthanasia. The Roanoke Valley SPCA does not have space for it at this time, but it is available for adoption.....Color:black

Black: After

Black- Love his focus, love his energy. Look at him. All dressed up and nowhere to go. Give him a place to go. Hook him up!

Carter: Before

 This animal is currently at the Regional Center for Animal Control and Protection and is in danger of euthanasia...Color:black

Carter: After

Carter, not Kotter! Such a good looking boy. Lean and athletic. Lots of positive energy. Let's hook him up!

Callie: Before


Calli: After

Open your Webster's Dictionary. Look up the word elegant. What do you see? A picture of Callie. Bring some elegance into your life. Adopt Callie.

Chloe: Before

 Color: orange

Chloe: After

Chloe is the kind of cat that makes dog people's allegiance to dogs waiver. She's so playful and loves people. Hook her up!

Heidi: Before

This animal is currently at the Regional Center for Animal Control and Protection and is in danger of euthanasia... Color:white/apricot

Heidi: After

Heidi is pocket size pibble, available and adoptable at the Regional Center for Animal Control and Protection in Roanoke, Virginia. Hook her up!


What a difference a photo and a and few kind words can make. And all because of a volunteer who wants to help.

A big thank you to the RCACP staff for braving the storm of the last few months. You remained professional, and we know it wasn't easy. We look forward to working with you, and can't wait to see the uncovered volunteer talents that will be brought to light for the heartbeats in your building.

The municipalities of Roanoke City, Roanoke County, Botetourt and Vinton have been outstanding in their support for change at the RCACP. Please make sure you thank them as well! 

To all of you who went to the council meetings, to your friends and neighbors, and to the streets in support of the homeless animals, you did it. The changes have started, and things will continue to improve.

And finally, to those who have been a force standing up for these homeless, neglected and abused pets long before any media story picked it up, you hold a place in our hearts like no other. It takes a very special, strong soul to remain steadfast in the battle between right and wrong, and we're proud of you. There are people and pets over that rainbow bridge who are too.

Public awareness of high kill rates at Roanoke pound and need for change- check.

Volunteer program- check.

Next on the agenda, a foster program and open adoption hours. Surely it won't be as hard this time around... right? Eh, either way, we're up for the challenge. Do it for Tiny. He's alive at the RCACP and deserves a second chance.


  1. Beautifully written! The photos are amazing and DO make such a difference! Yay for the animals...they deserve it :)

  2. Photos are amazing! Especially for the black dogs who oftentimes get overlooked.

  3. Photos are amazing, especially the black dogs who oftentimes get overlooked.

  4. Fantastic photography AND writing! What a difference!

  5. I love the new pictures, which portray the animals as the beautiful, amazing creatures--and potential pets--that they truly are. Great job!

  6. I love it - let's hope it keeps on coming. These animals deserve as much chance as any of the other abandoned animals. The photos are beautiful, and I know it will increase adoptions. As always, a picture is worth a thousand words! Go volunteers, and Hany Hosny, if these pictures won't do it, nothing will! Awesome!

  7. Thanks so much for making these heartbreaking statistics common knowledge. The public deserves to know what is going on with these adorable animals. If I could, I would bring them all home with me. I currently have 2 "pound puppies" who are incredible pets. I know your voice will not go on deaf ears. Thank you for taking your time to share.

  8. How can I Help?